Sunday, 31 January 2016

Reading This Month: January

The Taxidermist's Daughter by Kate Mosse
This is the third Kate Mosse book I've read, having read Labyrinth and Sepulchre. I never seem to get as into the stories as I think I will when I'm reading the blurb. I think it's because they start off so everyday, so normal, with no hint to anything particularly fantastic that by the end I'm left feeling that it's all... a little bit over the top?

Still, I did enjoy the book, in that I kept reading because I wanted to know what happened. I did feel that the ending was a bit weak, I didn't buy the why which sort of made the whole thing a bit weak for me. Would I recommend it? Hmm, probably not, to be honest.

On an entirely separate note, there seems to be a bit of a trend towards titling books based on the (usually female) protagonist's relationship to someone else (usually male). Not really sure how comfortable that makes me, but I guess that's a discussion for another time.

Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson
I downloaded this after hearing Bea on the Slow Home Podcast. It's something that really chimes with my word of the year, so this has been an interesting read for me.

Bea describes her family's journey from fast paced consumers to a zero waste home. It's a bit extreme for where Rich and I are at the moment (currently not living together and living with other people), but there is plenty in here that we are excited to try when we have our own place.

I'd definitely recommend checking this book out. There are some moments where I think - no, too far for me. But it's an interesting book and I love the idea that a zero waste home can give you a more expansive life.

The Danish Girl by David Ebershoff
I picked this up as I haven't had chance to check out the film yet and it seems like such a fascinating story. I ended up getting through it in two days as I just couldn't put it down.

It's a fictionalised account of the true story of Lili Elbe, the first person to receive gender reassignment surgery. But for me, the story seemed to focus much more on Greta, who was married to Einar Wegener, before the surgery, and encouraged her husband's female persona. It's an incredibly interesting story, watching Einar gradually fade away as Lili takes over and how Greta deals with it. I would love to see the film, but from the trailer I think they make a much bigger love story out of it, while what I loved about the book was the subtlety, the lack of melodrama and big declarations. It's very affecting, without being overblown. I'd definitely recommend it.

I'm currently reading The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell, which I've been desperate to read since it came out as I love his work.

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